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Why Your Betta Fish Is Turning White And How To Stop It!

Betta fish have been consistently growing in their popularity as pets for over two decades now with their popularity seeing exponential growth right now.

Although betta fish can be easier to care for than some other popular types of fish that people keep as pets, they can still have some issues if certain conditions within their tank are not met.

This leads to a number of questions each month about problems with betta fish and how to fix them.

Due to the beautiful vibrant colors of betta fish, it is obvious to notice when most of them are starting to change color and with betta fish having a number of issues that can cause them to turn white, it is no surprise that we see so many people reaching out and asking why their betta fish is turning white.

With so many people reaching out asking about the various reasons that their betta fish may turn white as well as the various different causes usually needing a different treatment, we have decided to publish this article.

Our hope is that we will be able to help our readers better understand the issue that their pet betta fish is suffering from as well as how they should go about fixing it too.

Why Is My Betta Fish Turning White?

The six main reasons that your pet betta fish may start turning white are due to columnaris, anchor worms, ich, stress, fin rot, and low quality food options.

Thankfully, most of these are quick, easy, and cheap to treat making it relatively easy for most betta fish keepers to help get their bettas color back to normal quickly.

Although there are steps that you are able to take to treat all of these conditions at home, sometimes it can be considerably easier if you have veterinary assistance.

Thankfully, due to modern technology, you are able to book a video call with a professional vet to have them give your pet betta fish the once over via your smartphone or computer webcam to offer the perfect course of action moving forward.

These video calls workout much cheaper than a visit to your local veterinarian with them usually being able to video call with you within minutes too.

If your betta fish is turning white due to columnaris, anchor worms, ich, or fin rot then the vet may be able to prescribe a specialist treatment that is not available over the counter helping your betta return to full health and regain its color quicker/

What Does It Mean If A Betta Fish Is Turning White?

Betta fish turning white can mean any number of things with the most common cause being a poor diet for the betta fish, especially for people new to keeping bettas.

Less common but more serious problems include columnaris, anchor worms, ich, stress, and fin rot with some of them being serious but relatively easy to treat.

If you are a beginner betta fish keeper then don’t feel bad if your betta is starting to turn white, it does not mean that you have done anything wrong, especially if it is due to an infection.

Even experienced betta fish keepers have these same issues from time to time too so just do your best to work out what is causing your betta fish to turn white from our breakdowns below and follow our advice for each section.

The most common cause of betta fish turning white for people new to keeping bettas is offering your fish an unsuitable diet.

We constantly see people feeding their betta fish generic fish flakes or pellets and although some bettas can survive on these fine, others will struggle to maintain their color.

This is why we usually recommend a complete betta fish food as they offer all the vitamins your betta needs to display their full color.

Freeze dried or live brine shrimp make an excellent, cheap treat food for your betta that can help to brighten and restore their color too.

How To Stop Your Betta Fish Turning White!

You are able to stop your pet betta fish from turning white by offering them better food, using medication, and reducing their stress levels depending on the reason that they are starting to turn white.

This can help the normal color of your betta fish return surprisingly quickly while also improving their general health in many cases.

If you are struggling to work out if your betta fish is turning white due to columnaris, anchor worms, ich, stress, fin rot or bad food then a quick video call with a vet should be able to clear things up.

Most of the time, it does tend to be easy to identify the causes of your betta fish turning white though and we will offer specific treatments for each cause below.

Although rare, some betta fish may have multiple conditions at the same time that are causing them to turn white too.

Due to this, even if you treat one cause, the other cause may continue turning your fish white but this is rare and more often than not, it is a single reason that your betta fish is starting to turn white.

My Betta Fish Scales Keep Turning White!

The most common reasons that your betta fish scales may turn white is due to a poor diet and high levels of stress that are both usually easy to fix.

A rarer cause of your bettas scales turning white is columnaris and ich that usually need specialist treatments and chemicals to fix.

As we touched on earlier in the article, a poor diet can usually be easily fixed by feeding your betta a complete betta fish food and using Freeze dried or live brine shrimp as a treat meal option too. If your betta is turning white due to stress, it is usually due to the tank being too small for it or having too many tank mates.

Switching to a larger tank or reducing the number of tank mates in with your betta will usually reduce its stress levels.

If you can see the signs of ich on your betta fish then APIs super ich cure can be a quick and easy treatment to return your pet betta fish to full health.

If you think that your betta fish is turning white due to columnaris then antibiotics from a vet is usually the best route to take as the commercial over the counter treatments for columnaris usually do little to nothing or simply take too long to work.

My Betta Fish Face Is Turning White!

The most common reasons that the face of your bett fish will start to turn white are columnaris, ich, stress, and in rarer cases, a poor diet with low levels of nutrition.

If you have your betta fish in a three gallon tank or a five gallon tank with other fish then levels can be increased in the fish making it an easy fix by moving it to a larger tank.

The face of a betta fish is usually the last part of the fish to turn white due to a poor diet so you can often rule this out if the fins, tail, and body of the fish still have their normal color.

This is where ich and columnaris usually come in as they can start on the head before spreading to the rest of your betta fish and eventually turning it all white and causing a number of other problems too.

If you do suspect that your betta fishes head is turning white due to columnaris or ich then getting advice from your vet is the best route to take.

If you think that it is ich then APIs super ich cure is a quick, easy, and cheap way to treat the issue and help your betta fish return to its regular color quickly.

My Betta Fish Is Turning White Under Its Chin!

It can be common for anchor worms to attach to your betta fish under its chin making it look like it is turning white when the white area on the fish is just the worm.

Although unlikely, it is possible that your betta fish is stating to turn white under its chin due to stress, poor food, columnaris or ich too.

If you look at your fish closely, you may be able to tell that the white area under its chin is the location of an anchor worm embedding itself within the fish.

If you can see the body of the worm then you can try an anchor worm treatment but the over the counter options really are hit and miss with the product often doing little to nothing about half of the time.

Although there are a number of DIY anchor worm treatments online, some of them can potentially harm your fish so seeking advice via a quick video call from a vet is usually the best route to take.

These specialist treatments for anchor worms can be very effective and allow you to remove the worm from your betta fish quickly without too much distress to your fish.

My Betta Fish Fins And Tail Are Turning White!

The most common reasons that your betta fish fins or tail will turn white is fin rot, stress, poor diet, and columnaris.

Due to the longer find on some betta fish, they can be more prone to fin rot than some of the other popular fish to keep as pets.

Fin rot can be a serious problem if not treat quickly and antibiotics from a vet is usually the best course of action to take.

There are a few over the counter treatments for fin rot on the market but they are not as effective as a specialist treatment from a vet.

Depending where you live, you may be able to have a vet check your betta over via video call and tell you the exact treatment that you need. This can work out to be much cheaper and quicker than going to your local vet.

If you do discover that your betta fish’ fins are turning white due to fin rot then it can be a good idea to clean the whole tank that they live in.

The bacteria can be resilient and even after the initial case of fin rot has been treat, it can come back unless you correctly clean the tank


That brings our article going over why your betta fish is turning white to an end. We hope that we have been able to help you identify the cause of your betta fish turning white as well as help you understand the best course of treatment for each cause. As we have mentioned a few times in the article, sometimes you will require assistance from a veterinarian but the more common causes of a betta fish turning white such as a poor diet and stress tend to be quick and easy to fix yourself.